MOBILE, Ala. -- To Aaron Murray, there was no reason to bypass the Reese's Senior Bowl this week.
Even though he can't practice or play because he is still recovering from the torn left ACL he suffered in late November, the ex-Georgia quarterback felt participating in South team meetings, interacting with the Jaguars coaching staff and meeting other NFL GMs and scouts was too valuable an opportunity.
"I just felt like I needed to be here to start the process off, meet some of these coaches, talk to them," Murray said. "Obviously I can't physically go out there and do things right now so the best thing I can do is get on the board, show them what I know, also get them to know a little bit about my personality and things like that."
Former Alabama quarterback and Mobile native A.J. McCarron made the opposite decision, and he has been criticized pretty heavily for it. NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock said McCarron is blowing a chance to prove that he could be a first-round pick. Murray, however, is getting nothing but praise for coming from Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley and offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch.
"I think it's a really cool thing that he did that and I told him that and so did Gus," Fisch said. "It's an opportunity. So many guys miss the opportunity to be a part of something like this. Why? Why not be a part of being around an NFL coaching staff and an NFL coaching system and make yourself available and make yourself learn and showcase your intelligence? This is the only place you could ever do that. You can't showcase your football knowledge at the combine nearly the same as you do here."
Murray is doing that by taking notes and asking questions in meetings. He is also attending practices and essentially attaching himself to Fisch and quarterbacks coach Frank Scelfo. As for being an active participant instead of just showing up, hanging out, and meeting NFL people, Murray said it would be a wasted trip if he didn't participate.
"I just love football," he said. "I love being in meetings. I love learning new things. I love getting new ideas about things I already know. Like certain route concepts that we're learning right now we run at Georgia but they might have a little twist on it. Take any opportunity to learn something new, to work with these guys. There's a reason why they're professional coaches.
"It'd be silly for me just to sit there and not do anything. Like I said this is an opportunity for me to get better and I'm going to take full advantage of it."
Murray said he will go to the NFL combine next month but won't work out or throw because of his injury. He said he plans on throwing at Georgia's pro day in March. He is projected as a middle-round draft pick and is someone in whom the Jaguars could be interested if he' still on the board in the fifth round.